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A newbie trying to save some money

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Christopher Morris 225/09/2019 19:47:24
58 forum posts

Hi, completely new to RC model planes, but thank goodness for the internet & forums for some possible help.
My first query is getting my first model plane & not wasting money. Many of the recommended beginners models come as a ready to fly & i can imagine the radio handset will only suit that model & be limited beond that plane. I was hoping to buy a slightly better radio handset that is a little more future proof & can connect & operate several planes. Was possibly thinking a “FrSky Taranis Q X7 2.4G” or similar at around £80 which would be within budget.
Now, can I buy any of these beginner plane's without the radio. ? Or any suggestions for a good starter plane.

Thanks

Allan Bennett25/09/2019 20:53:47
1555 forum posts
39 photos

Welcome to the forum and the hobby smiley

Without going into details of any specific model (since I don't have experience of any current models), one thing you might want to look at is models which are "bind'n'fly". That means they have a Spektrum receiver already installed, so you need only buy whichever Spektrum transmitter suits your budget and future aspirations. Some of them come with a Spektrum transmitter included, but I believe it's only a single-model device so it's worth negotiating with the vendor to substitute a DX6 or higher.

I'm a recent convert to FrSky Taranis gear, but its only downside for an absolute beginner is the fact that you have to program it before you can use it -- with Spektrum and other traditional transmitters you can almost use them straight out of the box.

Finally, whatever recommendations you get from this forum, do yourself a favour and find a local club. Hands-on help is even better than internet forums.

Denis Watkins25/09/2019 21:00:58
3914 forum posts
61 photos

Chris

Don't spend any money

Until you visit a model flying club

Map and location on the BMFA web site

Shaun Walsh25/09/2019 21:09:57
196 forum posts
13 photos
Posted by Denis Watkins on 25/09/2019 21:00:58:

Chris

Don't spend any money

Until you visit a model flying club

Map and location on the BMFA web site

I will second that, buy nothing until you have visited a local club and asked lots of questions of several people. If you are lucky they may have a club trainer you can try a few flight on before you commit any hard cash.

Paul Marsh25/09/2019 21:12:42
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3727 forum posts
1057 photos

Also, go to the Swap-meets, although you won't know what you want or where they are, sometimes you can get a real bargain, I've bought many aircraft and engines for almost nothing. I bought a trainer, with engine, servos for £1 a few months ago and fully equipped war plane for £20 last month.

Where in the country do you live? Might be a meet near your area?

Frank Skilbeck26/09/2019 08:16:14
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4498 forum posts
101 photos

Nothing wrong by trying to do a bit of future proofing, but the best money saving advice I can give is to join a club where you will get help and instruction. The best way to learn is the buddy box method and if none of the instructors can buddy to your chosen radio then you'll either get no flying or destroy aircraft trying to do it solo.

Cuban826/09/2019 09:10:36
2769 forum posts
13 photos

Hi Chris.

The very best advice is what the other chaps have said, find your local clubs and pay a visit to their field or evening meetings. You'll meet a variety of people with differing interests and opinions on models and radio gear; this will give you the opportunity to see how your needs and expectations fit in. Ask as many questions as you can think of and take advantage of the mistakes and errors that others have made and will be willing to share, no point in falling down the usual beginner 'rabbit holes'. Don't spend a single penny on any gear at the moment, see what help a club can give you in the way of a 'taster' and get you up and flying with a club trainer. Some clubs are better at this than others, so don't be disappointed if the first group that you find is not too up to speed with that. This might mean having to travel a little further than you'd like, but will be worth it.

Getting into the hobby and having success has never been more straightforward than now. You can build, or never go near a modelling knife and fly stuff straight out of the box - after learning to fly, of course. Don't try to do everything at once, master your first trainer model and explore every aspect of its flight envelope before moving on. The Spitfire can wait for a year or twowink.

Welcome and good luck.

kc26/09/2019 12:56:28
6058 forum posts
169 photos

Buying secondhand stuff from swopmeets or Ebay etc is for those who know enough about the equipment and not for beginners! The sort of bargains Paul mentioned are rare anyway.

It is common for clubs to find a newcomer has bought equip that is quite unsuitable and therefore wasted money. Often the models are too small - most clubs like 50 to 60 inch wingspan for visibility at height- or the radio is unsuitable for the clubs instructors to connect their buddy lead.

So the advice to visit a club and see what is required is correct. Ask whether the club can provide tuition,  flys both glow and electric, are there better hours for electric, and what Mode the club teaches ( Mode 1 throttle right or Mode 2 throttle left ) Most equipment sold now is Mode 2 but some clubs are Mode 1. You don't want to learn one mode and then change to another. It's also not very handy to be a mode1 flyer in a Mode 2 club or vice versa. I am a Mode 1 flier in a Mode 2 club and it means nobody can grab my Tx if something happens ( dirt in eye, stung by a wasp or heart attack etc!) and be certain of saving the plane.

It is quite likely the club will suggest a Spektrum DX6 as a good start - beware the cheaper Spektrums which come complete with models but which don't have all the features you may want. Some clubs are mostly Spektrum, some mostly Futaba but are rarely Taranis. If you buy some unusual make you may need to buy a second transmitter to use for a buddy system as the instructor will probably use Spektrum or Futaba.

Edited By kc on 26/09/2019 12:59:01

Chris Walby26/09/2019 13:20:45
avatar
1003 forum posts
236 photos

Totally agree with KC, I bought what I though were a couple good models. One turned out to be not even worth the cheap components fitted and fire wood, the other had been maiden with a C of G nearer the TE than the LE! 280g of lead sorted that.

Buy nothing yet, in short visit a couple of clubs, talk to the instructors and see what they advise most likely a foam ARTF and a tube of UHU por would be a good start.

Riot/Kingfisher running 3S2200 lipo with a TX that the instructor can buddy with (as long as the TX can buddy I would spend any more). Once flying you may chose to ditch the RX/TX combo you are running and go for something else for whatever reason.

Good luck and all the best.

PS once flying you could always do a mass build if you fancy balsa bashing, loads of forum help and your own built model at the end!

Douglas Groutage26/09/2019 13:41:06
10 forum posts
3 photos

As a relative newbie I concur with the other posts, my two cents is - When I bought my first and only radio - it was six channel... I thought why would I possibly want more?

Well now I want more, so go with 8 channels minimum if you will be inclined in any future direction of the hobby to want to build or get into more complicated models beyond throttle, ailerons, flaps, retracts, rudder, elevators - would be nice to have the extra channel for splitting the ailerons and retract doors etc...

Doug

Shaun Walsh26/09/2019 15:00:04
196 forum posts
13 photos
Posted by kc on 26/09/2019 12:56:28:

Buying secondhand stuff from swopmeets or Ebay etc is for those who know enough about the equipment and not for beginners! The sort of bargains Paul mentioned are rare anyway.

It is common for clubs to find a newcomer has bought equip that is quite unsuitable and therefore wasted money. Often the models are too small - most clubs like 50 to 60 inch wingspan for visibility at height- or the radio is unsuitable for the clubs instructors to connect their buddy lead.

So the advice to visit a club and see what is required is correct. Ask whether the club can provide tuition, flys both glow and electric, are there better hours for electric, and what Mode the club teaches ( Mode 1 throttle right or Mode 2 throttle left ) Most equipment sold now is Mode 2 but some clubs are Mode 1. You don't want to learn one mode and then change to another. It's also not very handy to be a mode1 flyer in a Mode 2 club or vice versa. I am a Mode 1 flier in a Mode 2 club and it means nobody can grab my Tx if something happens ( dirt in eye, stung by a wasp or heart attack etc!) and be certain of saving the plane.

It is quite likely the club will suggest a Spektrum DX6 as a good start - beware the cheaper Spektrums which come complete with models but which don't have all the features you may want. Some clubs are mostly Spektrum, some mostly Futaba but are rarely Taranis. If you buy some unusual make you may need to buy a second transmitter to use for a buddy system as the instructor will probably use Spektrum or Futaba.

Edited By kc on 26/09/2019 12:59:01

All good advice, although I learned in the 1970s on mode 1then had a 40 year break and found that my local clubs now flew mainly mode 2. It was interesting unlearning and relearning how to fly. On a couple of occasions I found myself wondering why the model was heading groundwards when I was applying full up elevator 🤔

Brian Hammond26/09/2019 15:13:58
315 forum posts

I agree with Denis and Shawn ,find what is popular in your local club and then enquire about buddy box !

David Davis26/09/2019 15:36:02
avatar
3439 forum posts
613 photos

Another advantage of joining a club is that you may come across someone who is selling an airworthy trainer, maybe with the radio as well.

As for Mode 1 and 2 it is better to learn the same mode as your instructor though it's not impossible for a Mode 2 instructor to teach a Mode 1 beginner and vice versa.

I am Mode 2. I retired five years ago to France where most people (85%) fly Mode 1. I am currently teaching a French Mode 1 beginner how to fly. Mind you he'd had three or four flights with a French Mode 1 instructor before he was handed over to me!

Aile plat!

ken anderson.26/09/2019 16:58:59
avatar
8454 forum posts
773 photos

hello Chris,all the above from me also--club,info then spend...not the reverse as you will probably waste some of your hard earned dosh...

ken anderson...ne..1..hard earned dept.

Nigel R26/09/2019 17:09:34
avatar
3109 forum posts
479 photos

"not wasting money"

What is your total budget?

It would help to know.

Christopher Morris 226/09/2019 20:54:51
58 forum posts

Ah! Thanks for getting back everyone. Sorry I didn't get back, it was all going in my junk folder. Good point on the club side & i am from Kings Lynn Norfolk & we do have a local model flying club called “King’s Lynn Aero Modelling Club” (KLAMC)
**LINK** & will get in touch to see what they can offer in the way of some tuition, preferably a buddy up lesson with dual radios. Budget wise, i will start at around £300-£400 & see how we go.
Just on another note? Is there a norm for the UK on a mode 1 or 2 radio, or is this purley personal choice?. For me i would think i would be more in favour of throttle on the left. But i see different countries around the world differ.
If there are any members from the KLAMC, say hi & you might be able to say what the clubs like.

Cuban826/09/2019 21:39:09
2769 forum posts
13 photos
Posted by Christopher Morris 2 on 26/09/2019 20:54:51:

Ah! Thanks for getting back everyone. Sorry I didn't get back, it was all going in my junk folder. Good point on the club side & i am from Kings Lynn Norfolk & we do have a local model flying club called “King’s Lynn Aero Modelling Club” (KLAMC)
**LINK** & will get in touch to see what they can offer in the way of some tuition, preferably a buddy up lesson with dual radios. Budget wise, i will start at around £300-£400 & see how we go.
Just on another note? Is there a norm for the UK on a mode 1 or 2 radio, or is this purley personal choice?. For me i would think i would be more in favour of throttle on the left. But i see different countries around the world differ.
If there are any members from the KLAMC, say hi & you might be able to say what the clubs like.

Just to clarify matters, gentlemen aeromodellers will always be found flying mode 1, whilst ruffian types will invariably bore you with their "much more like the real thing - all on one stick" stuff.

Sorry......only kidding. laugh An old chestnut that gets us going when we've nothing else to row about.

Go with the stick mode that your instructor uses, it's possible to mix modes between pupil and instructor in some circumstances, but keep it simple and just go with the flow.

Am I a gent or a ruffian? guess......wink

Denis Watkins26/09/2019 21:45:54
3914 forum posts
61 photos

A gent like me Cuban

smiley

Handyman26/09/2019 21:56:45
avatar
210 forum posts
1 photos

Cuban8,you sound like a "Gent" to me, and I fly mode1. I did try and change some years ago, but all my instincts were governed by my always flying Mode 1, so I stayed a "Gentleman"!

David Davis27/09/2019 07:04:06
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3439 forum posts
613 photos

Christopher about 60% of the membership of my old club in England, Shropshire Model Flying Club, were Mode 2 ruffians like me. The rest were gentlemen who rubbed their tummies while patting their heads! cheeky

Edited By David Davis on 27/09/2019 07:04:46

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